Sunday, March 17, 2013

Whole Foods "Egg Salad" (my favorite breakfast)

This is my idea of an Egg Salad...All fresh ingredients...

I have become a huge fan of fruit with my fact, I don't particularly care much for potatoes on the side anymore...I always ask for fresh fruit if its available.

The past few weeks, I have been eating at home for breakfast, to try to keep to keep it healthy.  This has become my favorite new breakfast.
I lay out my lettuce and parsley...curly lettuce and curly parsley are my favorite salad base, then I add walnuts, bleu cheese (or gorgonzola), fresh mozzerella and work on the fruit. Cut up the fruit...cantaloupe, watermelon, grapes, pineapple, and apples...also three or four slices of orange for the side. Fry the egg or eggs (one or two, depending on my hunger)...lay it on top and pepper the whole thing, even the fruit.
The egg yolk makes its own dressing for the salad..i cut it all up and mix it up together..its soo yummy.

I love parsley and pepper with my fruit.

Organizing the Kitchen and Cabinets

 I am having a heck of a time finding a container to fit my spice cabinet exactly. The measurements are 7 inches high, by 31 inches wide by 10 inches deep.  I want to utilize every ounce of space.  So basically, I want them 10 inches wide also so I can house three on each shelf.  This way, when I need a spice in the back, I don't have to individually pull out each little bottle of spice to get to one in the back.

I searched refrigerator organizers, but they are 14 inches deep. I am on the lookout or baskets, containers, whatever. Until then, I have gone and cut up boxes and retaped them to the dimensions I want so they are organized until I find the proper tool.  I had to make due.

I came up with this..and its working...those little rubbermaid type things...I have the spices alphabetized somewhat...A-C, C-H (so many C's!). Its hard to keep everything together, with so many chefs in my house, but at least its easy to spot them if they are kept close alphabetically.  I bought a bunch of rubber made baskets like the white ones and have one in my fridge for my "this is my work lunch for tomorrow, don't eat it" spot, in case the teenagers decide to eat a midnight snack...I don't wanna wake up to nothing for lunch.

Here are some other things I do to keep things organized in my cabinets.

 I have a picture of the inside of my kitchen cabinet, hanging on the inside of the cabinet door showing what goes where so if someone else does the dishes, they know how to put them away so they fit.  They can be a pill to keep organized.  Lids on top for easy access.  I also hang a few of my recipes that are the boys favorites, inside of the cabinet so they can make it when I am at work.

I  keep everything in stations. 

 Coffee supplies (filters, mugs and coffee,sugar pourer coffee press), in the cabinet above the coffeemaker. Next to the coffeemaker is the not so healthy but oh so good coffee syrup with a pump top because it saves on everyone in the house going to starbucks or dunkin for pricey flavored coffee) 

Baking supplies, in the cabinet above my stand mixer and  flour and sugar jars..the drawers under are the measuring cups, etc. Again, keeping a picture of the cabinets, saves a bunch of time and headaches having to reorganize. 

Under the sink cleaning supply storage..takes the spray bottles off of the bottom of the cabinet to make room for other things.

For some great organizing and cleaning tips, one of my favorite books is Martha Stewart's Homekeeping Handbook.  This is where I got the bluing agent advice years ago for laundry (makes whites whiter and blacks blacker), etc. Its a timeless book of how to clean and organize your home.  
Martha Stewart's Homekeeping Handbook: The Essential Guide to Caring for Everything in Your Home

Packing My Lunch for Work..rambling

I have a laborious job...I walk more miles in a day than most people walk in a week and I carry heavy things around, climb steel beams etc.  By lunch time I am always starving!!!  I don't mind a cold sandwich on occasion, and in the summer its fine, but in the cold winter, I am outside for work sometimes and for 10 hours on occasion.  A hot meal is nearly required for me to make it through the day.

It can be challenging, working full time and worrying about packing my lunch.  My co-coworkers eat out about 75% of the time.  I am a packer..if I spend the money to eat out, I want it to be with my family so I pack my lunch 100% of the time.I even make a nice little breakfast for myself for my morning break since I am up before my stomach every morning. Things like scrambled eggs, raw milk in a canning jar (and a baggie with my cereal or museli), fruit salad, etc.
Apple Walnut Gorgonzola salad with creamy italian dressing 

You can eat healthier too if you pack instead of eating out. I end up hungry at afternoon break. I try to pack something healthy like a poppy seed fruited slaw or an apple  walnut gorgonzola salad and a homemade healthy dressing for afternoon snacking.  If I don't, I find myself eating junk from the vending machine (which to be honest, there are days I do this but I try to keep them to a minimum.  I love salads with fruit in them. Sort of a sweet and savory all in one. Also a fruit salad with fresh parsley..amazing!

Weekends are my big cooking days.  I like to try to cook enough big meals for the week, so my kids aren't tempted to eat McDonald's for lunch and/or dinner.

Every  meal I make, I make extra and put one or two of my work containers (I use glass because I don't like to reheat in plastic).  I label them with what it is and the date and toss it in the freezer..I  have a shelf designated just for my work meals so I know when I am low on things to take to work.  All I have to do is pull one out and toss it in my bag, grab a fork and I have what I need.
Shepherd's Pie, Golumpki Stew, and chicken and kale soup, frozen and ready to take...I will freeze in the plastic containters, but I thaw and put in glass to take to work to reheat. I don't cook in plastic. EVER

I also shop for things like recooked frozen chicken/turkey strips, rotisserie chickens, precooked chicken sausage etc.  Then..I toss some in a container  add some pico de gallo (my grocery store has fresh salsa that is just that), bleu cheese or Gorgonzola cheese, frozen pepper strips, frozen corn, beans, whatever I have...when i get to work the frozen things are thaw, I heat it in the microwave and the people in the breakroom say, what smells so good.

Those beautiful salads in a jar look amazing..but how does one eat that?  There is no room for the dressing to incorporate with the ruffage in that jar.  You almost have to eat one layer at a time.  I just make mine in a dish and put the dressing in a small container.

Summer is coming so I will be wanting some cold meals too again, but until then, I will stick to the hot meals. I will post some ideas for cold meals in a month or so.  One of my favorites is...peanut butter and lettuce sandwiches..I was thinking with bacon it would be good too..I will keep ya posted on how that tastes.

Creamy Italian Dressing (in the blender)

This is super easy and delicious!  Yes it has mayo, use good mayo or make your aren't supposed to drown your food in the dressing anyway. Go ahead and substitute yogurt or whatever if you prefer.Also, you can omit the sugar..I don't..everything in moderation.

Creamy Italian Dressing
In a blender:

1 cup mayo
1/2 small onion
2 T red wine vinegar
1 T white sugar
3/4 tsp italian seasoning
1/4 tsp garlic powder
1/4 tsp salt
1/8 tsp fresh cracked black pepper

Whirl in blender until smooth.
Makes 1 1/2 cups 

My apple walnut gorgonzola salad I made for my afternoon break at work.  If I don't pack something healthy for that second break, I will hit the vending machine.  

Saturday, March 2, 2013

Morning Energy Shot ~Raw Foods

I got this incredible book, Raw Energy that I have been diving an effort to thwart the Tastykake devil.  I watched a great documentary called Hungry for Change where they tell ya, don't focus on getting rid of the bad, add the I am doing that and it seems to work out most days. I figure, 80-20...80% healthy food and 20% indulgences....remember, if your pants start to get tight, stop indulging!

I tried a few of the recipes. Here is a good one to try, basic and easy, has almost everything my magic potions has in it for colds. It makes one serving...

Morning Power Shot

1/2 c water
juice of a medium lemon (1/4-1/3 c)
2 tsp fresh grated ginger root
2 tsp raw honey
pinch of cayenne pepper (I over did this one this morning, it was hot! but good)

Heat the water, pretty not boil.
In a mug, put the lemon juice, ginger, honey and pepper in the mug.
Pour the hot water over, and let it steep for 5 mins.
Drink..don't strain...

This will give you the energy of a cup of coffee (actually it gave me more, I think I am immune to the effects of coffee).  I will be coming at you with more recipes from this book.  Just you wait and see.  Definitely a keeper as far as "cook" books go.